The Octavia has always been a restrained but handsome looking car, and this new version is no different. The Octavia's new front-end receives the most radical changes with another set of lights that sit next to a more sculpted front grill. The changes to rear are more subtle but it looks neater and sharper than its predecessor.
The new Octavia will be launched in the UK in March 2017 and will be available with four engines, two petrol and two diesel options. The 1-litre TSI petrol engine and 1.6 TDI diesel engine will both have 113bhp, while the 1.4-litre TSI and 2-litre TDI both put out 148bhp.
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There’s two gearboxes to choose from too. There’s the ruthlessly fast, twin-clutch DSG gearbox or a conventional manual. Regardless of engine or gearbox, every new Octavia at launch will be front wheel drive as standard, however the 2-litre TDI will be available with a Haldex four-wheel drive system as an option.
The new Octavia will be available with optional adaptive dampers. Skoda’s Dymanic Chassis Control will work in conjunction with the steering to allow a driver to change the characteristics of the car with three different modes Comfort, Normal and Sport.
There is a plethora of driver assistance and safety systems in the new Octavia, including predictive pedestrian protection, rear radar, blind spot Detection and rear traffic alert. The most interesting, however, is the trailer assist system that helps you reverse when you have a trailer hitched by taking over the steering completely. It’s a system that we've seen on Audi’s A4 Allroad and have been very impressed with. Ok it’s hardly the epitome of the Thrill Of Driving, but it's a system that could be incredibly useful when trying to shunt your race or trackday car around the paddock of your local race circuit.
Since 2014, the Octavia has been the only model in the Skoda range to get the vRS treatment. There were rumours that there wouldn’t be a performance version of this new Octavia, and that the vRS badge would cease to exist. But thankfully, that isn’t the case and a new Octavia vRS will be launched along side the Octavia Scout towards the end of next Spring.